Ask 2: Are restaurants legally allowed to use the outside pavement space as a dining area?

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At KPRC 2, we’re dedicated to keeping Houstonians informed. As part of our Ask 2 series, the newsroom will answer your questions about all things Houston.

Question: Are restaurants legally allowed to use the outside pavement space as a dining area?

Answer: Yes, restaurants are legally allowed to utilize outside pavement as a dining area.

The City of Houston considers these seating arrangements to be “sidewalk cafés,” which require a license.

The license allows restaurants to operate an outdoor dining area located on a sidewalk and containing removable tables, chairs, planters, or related appurtenances, according to the Houston Permitting Center.

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